Tag: health challenges

Why We Don’t Walk Anymore (plus a Primal Health Challenge)

How many steps do you walk every day? Do you hit 10,000 steps, which experts recommend and is about 5 miles’ worth? Do you match the daily walking of a Hadza man or woman (8.3 or 5.5 km/day, respectively)? If you’re anything like the average American, you’re doing 5,117 steps a day, well shy of the 10,000 step mark and flirting dangerously with a formal sedentary classification. But we’re not alone (though we’re the worst). Of the four industrialized countries studied, not a single one found the mark. The Australians seem to come close, walking 9,695 steps a day. The Swiss follow with 9,650, and the Japanese are a bit further off with 7,168 steps per day. Contrast that with rural South African women, of whom just 11.9% can be classified as sedentary (under 5,000 steps a day) and for whom an average day means walking 10,594 steps (many of them done while carrying a load), or Amish aged 18-75 (PDF), who walk an average of 18,425 steps (men) or 14,196 steps (women) each day, and we’re all looking pretty darn sedentary.

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Success Stories in the Making: Updates and a Contest

Around 90 days ago, I unveiled a new feature for the site. Designed to motivate people into making public, formal declarations of intent to improve their health, Success Stories in the Making has by all accounts been a massive success. Something like 450 people are participating this inaugural year, which means that 450 people submitted candid photos and shared their goals and aspirations. Many of these people are admittedly self-conscious about their appearances – which is often one of the reasons they’re resolved to making the change in the first place – and yet there they are, online and uploaded for all to see. Go take a look, and prepare to be amazed at the dedication and determination displayed within.

Pretty cool, huh? Now, imagine how much cooler it’ll be once progress pics start trickling in. Imagine how much more powerful those pages will be when it’s a vast ocean of healthy happy Primal people brimming with vitality and accomplishment! But I’m getting ahead of myself.

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Community, Accountability, and a New Year Challenge

Happy New Year, everyone! Is everyone pumped for 2012? Resolutions made and in action yet?

I’m coming at the new year with big plans, the first of which is a brand spankin’ new Challenge. I’ll get to that in a minute, but let me first say a few words about the power of resolutions.

Experts tell us that those who make resolutions are literally ten times more likely to achieve their goals than those who are interested in change but don’t make a specific, concrete commitment. Now that’s reason to resolve. Sure, motivation can and does wane. A little less than half of those who make resolutions are still committed to the journey six months down the road, but there’s plenty we can do to make sure we’re not among those who detour themselves. Among the most effective strategies: making your resolution public (PDF). Announce it to the world. Shout it from the rooftops. Own it. Flaunt it. Do a dance around it on YouTube. Tell the world you’re going to make this happen. Chances are then, you will. And you’ll have a great time doing it.

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Primal Experiment: Intentional Power Outage

A few months back, I linked to an article about a guy who experienced an unexpected benefit after Hurricane Irene knocked out his power for several days: he started sleeping much, much better. Instead of staying up late on the computer or with the TV blaring and going to bed at the usual 11:30 or midnight, he found himself yawning around 9 PM and getting to bed at 10. It was the best sleep of his life, and even better – the effects persisted even after the power returned. He had effectively entrained his circadian rhythm to the natural cycle of light and dark. This is basic stuff to you guys, but bear with me.

Just last week, a reader named Melissa emailed me with a similar story. She lost power for three and a half days after a Connecticut snowstorm took out power all across the state. Instead of panicking, she rolled with it. Instead of freaking out over the fact that there were sub-freezing temperatures, no heat, and no water (it froze), she made a fun snowball fight out of a snowstorm. She took it as an opportunity to get “unexpectedly extra-Primal.” I like it. I remember those New England winters, and I can’t imagine a better way to deal with them than to accept the challenge and make the best of it.

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Contest Poll: The 2011 Grokfeast Challenge

I’d like to thank the 13 groups who participated in the Grokfeast Challenge this year. Your level of creativity, commitment, and enthusiasm serves as a hallmark for Primal living at its best. It’s been an immense pleasure reading and publishing your experiences on Mark’s Daily Apple.

As good as they all were, only one group can win the cow. One more shout out to US Wellness, who is donating all the grass-fed beef. If you ever want to take your beef eating to the next level, hit up their newsletter and join the grass-fed revolution.

UPDATE: This poll is now closed. Congrats to those that participated in and submitted the Grokfeast in San Antonio, Texas. Grok on!

OK, now on to business. Below are the three finalists. I’ve posted the finalists’ videos, but please click through to the individual posts before voting. Check out the recipes and read their stories. Then vote on the Grokfeasters who you believe best captured the spirit of going Primal. You have until Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. PST to vote.

Grokfeast in San Antonio, Texas

Grokfeast in St. Louis, Missouri

Grokfeast in North Carolina

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Grokfeast in North Carolina

On September 13th I asked Mark’s Daily apple readers to host a Grokfeast (a picnic/party celebrating the Primal lifestyle) and to send me the results. The following is one of 13 amazing submissions, the best of which will win an entire cow courtesy of US Wellness.

Welcome stumblers and all newcomers to the Windsor Oaks Band “WOB-ler” Grokfeast.

A rock and roll show, camping, relays, sprints, burpees, the “Caterpillar”, primal bounty roasted over the fire, all on the beach and barefoot… what a weekend it was!

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Grokfeast in Monroe City, Missouri

On September 13th I asked Mark’s Daily apple readers to host a Grokfeast (a picnic/party celebrating the Primal lifestyle) and to send me the results. The following is one of 13 amazing submissions, the best of which will win an entire cow courtesy of US Wellness.

My 11-year-old son, Charlie, begged us to enter this year’s Grokfeast challenge. Sure, sure, we said, nodding and then promptly forgetting after telling him he was in charge of all the planning.

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Grokfeast in Nebraska

On September 13th I asked Mark’s Daily apple readers to host a Grokfeast (a picnic/party celebrating the Primal lifestyle) and to send me the results. The following is one of 13 amazing submissions, the best of which will win an entire cow courtesy of US Wellness.
What a great Primal Sunday!!! I started this morning by going to my garden in the rain and picking the vegetables that I would be using for my 2 salads. After preparing those, I finished the morning by rubbing a pig’s butt with a seasoned rub. I cooked it all day long, and my house smelled awesome!!! Whomever says pigs stink has never rubbed their butt with such a delicious rub!

After our guests arrived, we primed ourselves for supper with some good old fashioned potato sack races. I figured we may as well use EVERYTHING we have so as not to waste anything, so the potato sacks ended up coming in handy. After everyone was winded, we settled down to enjoy our feast. Our feast consisted of BBQ Rub Pork Butt, Bacon Broccoli Salad, Cucumber/Tomato/Onion Salad, and Baked Peaches with Almonds for dessert. All the food was a hit, and the only creature we had to protect ourselves from while eating was a Tiger (aka: family cat).

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Grokfeast in Idaho

On September 13th I asked Mark’s Daily apple readers to host a Grokfeast (a picnic/party celebrating the Primal lifestyle) and to send me the results. The following is one of 13 amazing submissions, the best of which will win an entire cow courtesy of US Wellness.
Alright, well we got to the park at around 1:00pm and immediately started to set up the grills and get those going so that the food that needed to be cooked could get started. The kids started playing tag with their dad and doing handstands and cartwheels. I put out the zucchini chips and the pico de gallo to stave off the starvation. Everyone liked that. I was surprised that the kids were eating it so well. Apparently so was Josie. She kept saying how she loved it when we tried new recipes because they got to try them. So it must have been a good success. From there, we just ate when the food was done. So naturally the hot dogs and brats were done first because they cook the fastest. Next were the shrimp and beef kabobs. I don’t think they were a huge success because we ended up bringing a lot of those home with us. The ribs took FOREVER to cook. Everyone was most excited about those. We all ate as the food was done so it ended up being an eat and then go play for a little bit then come back and eat cycle. Which was fun, especially because I think that’s how Grok would have eaten anyways.

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Grokfeast in Ontario, Canada

On September 13th I asked Mark’s Daily apple readers to host a Grokfeast (a picnic/party celebrating the Primal lifestyle) and to send me the results. The following is one of 13 amazing submissions, the best of which will win an entire cow courtesy of US Wellness.

Sault Ste. Marie (or as we refer to it…the Soo) is a small town in size but we definitely have a mighty spirit! What we also have, is a large community of crossfitters and with it comes a lot of paleo and primal eaters. When the Mark’s Daily Apple blog issued the 30 day primal challenge in early September, our friend Joe quickly facebooked everyone to see if any would commit. With the enthusiastic response he received, he started a facebook group where we could all share our daily experiences. Then came the Grokfeast contest. This was something that I just had to try. You see, I was doing pretty well at the primal challenge with the eating, sleeping and exercise bit, but I always seem to falter with the “having fun” part. I’m a very organized, regimented “book worm” type of person who doesn’t let her hair down and get silly. So I went out of my comfort zone and posted to the group to see if anyone was crazy enough to go out in public and give Grokfeast a try. To my amazement, a few of my crossfit friends answered my call.

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